Niobium (also known as columbium) is a shiny, ductile metal primarily used in alloys. It improves the properties of steel and is often used in gas pipelines, jet engines and structural applications. Because of its corrosion resistance and ability to perform at high temperatures, niobium metal plates, rods and sheets are used in sputtering targets and chemical processing equipment. At extremely low temperatures, it becomes superconductive. Superconductive niobium wire is used to make extremely powerful electromagnets used in magnetic resonance imagery and particle accelerators.
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